Seeking the Comfort of Community at Wentworth Heights

Couple looks forward to the opening of their new home in 2016

By Kristian Partington

There’s a story floating through cyberspace about an older woman who, rather than choosing to move into a retirement home, opts to spend her time constantly living on cruise ships where her meals are all prepared, a doctor is right on board, rooms are cleaned every day and there are new people to meet all the time. Rumour even has it that this endless cruise may be more affordable than a typical retirement home.  

Two residents sitting and enjoying a coffee
Future Wentworth Heights residents Murray and Dorothy Staples relax
along Main Street during a tour of Tansley Woods in October. 

Dorothy Staples has heard the story, and she dismisses it outright.

“God, I’d get tired of that,” she says with a smile, “I really would.” She and her husband, Murray, need to be part of a community, she says, and as they age they need to know they will be secure and safe in their home, no matter how their health needs might change.

That’s why they were among the first wave of people to place deposits down on the new retirement suites under construction at the Village of Wentworth Heights in Hamilton. As of the last week of November, more than 80 of the 258 suites are spoken for, and that number is sure to rise after the model suites open for touring in January.

For Dorothy, it’s all about community. She’s a people person, she explains, and she loves the Main Street concept that is the bustling focal point of village life in all Schlegel Villages. In October, she and Murray had the opportunity to get a sense of the life that awaits them at Wentworth Heights when they visited the Village of Tansley Woods, a sister village in Burlington.

They toured the village and were welcomed into residents’ suites to see exactly what they could expect, and she had a chance to speak with resident Keith Woodley as she browsed through the General Store off Main Street where he volunteers. She and Murray ran a little store in the small village of Grassie, just south of Grimsby, she later explains.

“I enjoyed working in that store, looking after people,” she says, and the fact that she may be able to spend time volunteering in a similar way in her new home is just one of the reasons she’s happy about the decision she and Murray made to join Wentworth Heights when the new neighbourhoods open in the fall of 2016. They had looked at other possibilities, Dorothy says, but they were more expensive and offered less. Wentworth Heights, however, offers a full continuum of care and with Murray’s health changing after surviving a stroke, it’s important to know they don’t have to move if his needs change.

And there’s a true sense of community within the village, Dorothy adds, suggesting that the lifestyle unfolding before the Staples at Wentworth Heights seems to fit better than an endless cruise ever could.

“I was so glad to see this home opening up,” she says.